Cystitis, sex and how your partner can help

Sex, cystitis, talking to your partner and your love life

You have had an episode of one or a few bouts of cystitis and your partner suggests a night away in a romantic hotel.  It all sounds perfect except the thought of another bout of cystitis which can often be aggravated by sex is a real passion killer.  Many women shun their partners for long periods such is their fear of having an infection and all the problems that can go with it.  Time off work, visits to the doctors etc. What can help?

Unfortunately due to a women’s anatomy (women have a short urethra) cystitis is more prevalent in women than men so it is often hard for your partner to understand the pain and distress cystitis can cause. 

What can help cystitis and your love life?

Things that can help you and your partner are;

  1. Wee after sex not before.  Standing up slightly as you wee can make the stream more forceful to empty your bladder completely.  This is a good trick whilst you have an infection as well.
  2. Take D-mannose (a simple sugar before sex, if you cannot do this before, then do it afterwards).  Keep some by the bed so it is easy to remember
  3. Don’t take baths with scented bubble bath or use any specific perfumed cleansers in your intimate areas.
  4. Use a lubricant that is not perfumed and made with natural ingredients.  This is one of our favourite brands here an all natural water based lubricant.  We will do a separate post on lubricants later.
  5. Run a warm bath and sit in it to pass urine if you cannot go to the toilet.  This can help with the pain.  It sounds awful but it really helps and you can take a shower afterwards.
  6. Avoid acidic drinks such as tea, alcohol or cranberry juice.  D-mannose is present in cranberry juice in very small quantities.  The sugar and acidity of cranberry juice means that it can help E-coli to proliferate so it is counter-productive.  Drink hot water and lemon juice to help alkalise urine.
  7. If you get an infection ask your partner to fill a hot water bottle put it where it feels comforting, normally over your bladder.  It can help reduce the pain.
  8. If you get an infection take D-mannose every  2 to 3 hours and take before or during the night to allow it to concentrate in the bladder
  9. Talk to your partner, explain how you feel and that you are not put off them, rather you cannot face the idea of another bout of cystitis. 
  10. Wear cotton pants not sexy pants but breathable fabric. If they do not cause friction that also helps.  Replace your every day pants with ones made of 100% cotton fabric.  Primark  does organic cotton pants which fit nicely.  All the fancy tight french knickers are a no as they cause too much friction.  So no sexy pants only sensible Bridget Jones ones, but definitely a necessary preventative measure.